Missing my own kid’s eye issues
It’s funny the things you learn about people when you’re suddenly spending completely uninterrupted time with them. Even your own husband. Even your own children.
For instance, although I certainly knew that Georgia had ADHD, it wasn’t until I was the one, all day every day, trying to make her sit down, sit still, and do her work that I suddenly realized, “Sweet hopping sassafras, this kid needs some Ritalin!” (No guilt, no regrets, don’t even waste your time trying to make me second-guess this decision in the comments because I am 100 percent not here for it.)
And Ruby … well, it wasn’t until I let her schoolwork fall by the wayside because I was so overwhelmed with Georgia’s schoolwork that I truly realized the extent to which she no longer needed my involvement … and the true depth of my misplaced and unwanted helicoptering tendencies.
Then there was the matter of Georgia’s eyesight. I started noticing her squinting at things in the distance, but I honestly thought it was a stalling tactic at first to keep her from doing her work.
“Come on, now; pay attention and do your reading!” I said.
“I can’t see, Mom,” she said. “I need glasses.”
Once she said that, I got suspicious. When I was her age, I desperately wanted glasses, but I was blessed/cursed (depending on your perspective) with perfect vision. My conscience was too pure to attempt to fudge the vision test, though, so ultimately my mom got some glasses from the thrift store and punched the lenses out, and I wore them enthusiastically for the better part of a year before my sense of peer judgment kicked in and I began to suspect that I was The Weird Kid. (Joke’s on me because I drastically lost vision in my 20s and now can’t see more than a foot in front of my face without glasses.)
“Georgie, honey, listen, if you just want glasses, we can get you some with clear lenses,” I told her. “I don’t want glasses,” she said plainly. “I just can’t see.”
I still, somehow, wasn’t convinced. I tried various homemade vision tests but could never decide if she was just faking it. (Yes, I feel bad about this now.)
Finally my husband came home one day and said, “I really think Georgia might need glasses. Today in the car, she told me, ‘Oh, Daddy, look at that cute puppy!’ and I looked and it was a cat!”
So then I was convinced … but we were still in Phase 1 then, and I doubted anyone could see her. In July, I finally made an appointment … and then the doctor canceled … and now it’s October and we finally took her to the eye doctor last week, and well …
… She needs glasses. Like pretty badly.
I’m the worst mom ever.
My husband took her to the eye exam, and he said that when they flipped the lens to the vision correction, she went, “WHOA! I SEE IT NOW! IT’S THE ALPHABET!”
We went and picked out some cute frames, and they should arrive any day now. She will be adorable with glasses – but most important, she will be able to see! The words on billboards! The leaves on trees! The fact that a cat is not a dog!
I hope that if not for the pandemic, I might have addressed this sooner, but at least it’s on its way to being fixed now.
Have you ever totally misjudged your kids’ intentions? Or suddenly noticed something in quarantine you never noticed before? Make me feel better about this in the comments!